China vows to continue with Paris Accord even if US pulls out

Source AP Yonhap News
Source AP Yonhap News
Author

02 June, 2017

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang during news conference at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany, June 1, 2017.

Germany and China vowed to extend their relationship in an increasingly uncertain global environment, Chancellor Angela Merkel and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said after talks in Berlin on Thursday.

Li used Thursday's meeting with Merkel to reaffirm China's commitment to "steadfastly" implement the Paris climate agreement, even if the United States pulls out.

Without mentioning the USA specifically, amid reports President Donald Trump is poised to announce his country will withdraw from the agreement, he said China has been "actively promoting the Paris agreement and we were one of the first countries to ratify the Paris agreement".

The summit in Brussels could mark a dramatic shift in global politics, with the European Union taking over from the United States in working with China to fight climate change.

Merkel and Li met hours ahead of Trump's decision on whether to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate accord.

While not mentioning the U.S.by name, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told reporters that climate change is a "global challenge" that no country can ignore.

Merkel vented her frustration with Trump on Sunday after what she described as unsatisfactory talks at the meeting of G7 leaders, saying Germany - and Europe - could no longer completely rely on traditional allies.

More news: Top Trump aide exits as wider White House overhaul expected

Juncker went on to say that the Group of Seven leaders "tried to explain this in clear simple sentences to Mr. Trump" at a recent summit in Italy.

The flurry of visits come as concern grows in traditionally Atlanticist Germany at Trump's forthcoming announcement on the Paris Climate Accord, created to reduce the carbon dioxide emissions scientists blame for rising sea levels and droughts.

"We will continue to lobby the Americans and the White House to show the leadership they have shown in the past on reducing CO2, " he said.

She said her country will implement the "Industrial 4.0" strategy's combination with China's "Made In China 2025" blueprint, and expand cooperation with China under the framework of the G20.

It commits them to cutting back on fossil fuels, developing more green technology and helping raise billions of pounds to help poorer countries cut emissions.

Mr Li is set to meet top European Union officials at a summit in Brussels today.

Li's visit came amid a growing rift between Germany and the USA under the Donald Trump administration, with German officials expressing hope that China would become a responsible stakeholder in the liberal worldwide order.

However, thorny issues remain between the two exporting nations, with Merkel insisting that China opens up its markets and that German firms operating there should have a level playing field.


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